Optimize your restaurant goals with Reserve with Google.
9 mins read

Optimize your restaurant goals with Reserve with Google.

89 percent of people research restaurants online before visiting, reserving a table or placing an order. Building a solid online presence and using all available features to get leads from Google can make a significant difference in a restaurant’s bottom line.

Google has developed various tools and features that allow restaurant owners to provide all the necessary information about their menu offerings, atmosphere and more for each restaurant location via Google Business Profiles. For local diners, this means they can view menus, message the restaurant, place orders, search for restaurant-specific attributes, and even reserve a table without leaving the search interface.

This can save your customers a lot of time – and your brand a lot of resources. When guests can find everything they need on one platform, they have fewer reasons to speak to someone to make a reservation or learn basic details like menu options. Consumers have what they need to decide and convert without having to call or visit the restaurant first.

In this blog, we dig deep to understand how Reserve with Google works — and how you, as a restaurant brand, can make the most of it.

What is Reserve with Google?

Reserve with Google is a feature that allows customers to book appointments and make reservations online. Google offers Reserve with Google and Join the Waitlist to help your restaurant locations increase direct bookings and reduce the burden on your customer support team. Our world is fast-paced and technology-driven, and customers are constantly looking for the fastest, most convenient way to book their next meal. Simplifying the customer experience is a surefire way to attract more takeout, delivery, and eat-in customers.

In 2019, Google added the “put on the waitlist” option for customers to further improve the on-site restaurant experience. This feature allows customers to track wait times according to dining party size.

Join the GBP waiting list
Example of the “Put on the waiting list” function.

Customers can waitlist through Google Search and Google Maps. This makes the dining experience for customers in the listed restaurants efficient and elegant. They can access the menus, order their food online and learn about the ins and outs of the place while they wait.

Make a reservation using the Google interface
Author’s screenshot, Google Reserve

How Restaurant Brands Benefit from Reserve with Google

The benefits of a solid Reserve with Google listing for restaurant brands include:

Restaurants appear in Google search results

When people search for available dining options, a meaningful listing helps your restaurant brands stand out in Google search results. This helps increase your visibility and potential for new customers.

Customers can easily make reservations through Google

Features like Reserve with Google allow customers to make reservations online, making the process quick and convenient for both the customer and the restaurant.

Reserve with Google GBP
How “reserve a table” appears on a GBP

It offers a centralized booking system

A complete listing allows restaurant brands to manage their reservations, table availability and waitlist through one central booking system. The feature streamlines their operations and improves efficiency. It prevents confusion and customers don’t feel left alone when visiting a busy restaurant.

It provides access to local search data and customer insights

With a solid listing, restaurant brands access data and insights about their customers. You can gather information about reservation patterns, eating habits, and more to better plan and prepare for most eventualities.

It allows for targeted promotions

Restaurants can engage with the customer through targeted promotions and messaging that Reserve with Google helps create. This can increase customer engagement and loyalty, leading them to come more often and even recommend the restaurant to other people.

Literature recommendations: This is how you succeed in the local marketing strategy of your restaurant

By boosting your Google Business (GBP) profile, you’ll significantly increase your online presence and increase your chances of being discovered by hungry guests. Here are listing features to help improve your restaurant’s GBP:

  • attributes
  • Online order
  • GBP menu cards

restaurant attributes

Complete and accurate information about your restaurant in GBP can make a world of difference in local search results. Attributes allow you to provide proactive, specific information that can help your listing appear in searches where customers are looking for things like a specific type of cuisine, payment options, or accessibility measures.

Learn more about mastering the GBP attributes for your restaurants here.

Restaurant attributes in GBP
How and where attributes appear in restaurant listings

Online order

By enabling Google Ordering for your GBP, you make it easier for your customers to place orders and avoid long waiting times. You can already order while searching. It also helps a restaurant better engage customers while they’re still interested.

Google menus

Updating your menu information on your GBP is essential for customer retention and search visibility. A customer can access information about all food and beverage options available to you through your profile. This allows them to easily select and order. In turn, your restaurant can maximize your sales and profits.

Learn more about online ordering and menu syndication for corporate brands here.

Get started with Reserve with Google.

Getting started with Reserve with Google is a simple process that can be accomplished in two ways:

  1. Manage your bookings through Google Business Profiles.
  2. Access bookings through a supported planning partner.

Manage bookings directly

If you prefer to manage your bookings directly:

  1. To use Google Reserve, you must create or update a Google Business Profile account and claim ownership of each restaurant listing.
  2. Once you’ve set up the Google Business Profile, you can use Reserve with Google to manage your bookings. Activate Google Reserve in the Bookings section of your account.
  3. Next, you need to set your company’s availability for bookings. Include what days and times you’re open and how far in advance customers can book.
  4. Offer your customers various booking options, e.g. B. Online or in person appointments and set your prices and duration for each option.
  5. Google Reserve gives you a calendar view of all bookings, allowing you to manage existing bookings and book new ones.
  6. Confirm bookings with customers via email or SMS and send pre-seat reminders.
  7. Finally, you can review the performance of your bookings and analyze customer behavior to make data-driven decisions to improve your company’s booking process.

Make sure you keep your brand’s listings up to date to avoid poor customer experiences.

Integration via a planning partner

The integration process is straightforward when you access bookings through a supported planning partner. In general, making a reservation with Google through a scheduling partner involves the following steps:

  1. Choose a partner that best suits your needs and budget. Planning partners include Waitlist, Reservia, SimplySeated and Zomato.
  2. Most planning partners offer a simple integration process that links your Google Business Profile accounts to your planning partner account. This allows your planning partner to access each restaurant location’s information and manage your bookings through Google Reserve.
  3. Once your planning partner is connected, you need to set up your availability in the planning platform. Please advise when you are open for business and available for bookings.
  4. You can offer your customers different booking options, such as online or face-to-face appointments, and set different prices and durations for each option.
  5. Your planning partner manages your bookings through Google Reserve, showing you a calendar view of all bookings and allowing you to manage existing bookings and make new bookings. You’ll also receive notifications when customers make or change a reservation.
  6. The planning partner can confirm bookings with customers via email or SMS and can remind customers of appointment reminders.

Your planning partner can provide valuable data and insights into your company’s booking process. It may contain information about the number of bookings, the popularity of different booking options and the performance of your planning partner’s platform.

Here is an example of the integration process for adding Join the Waitlist through a scheduling partner.

Build a restaurant business in each market you serve

A solid local listing is crucial to attracting motivated consumers in their decision-making moments. By using features like Reserve with Google and Waitlist, restaurant brands and franchise locations can differentiate themselves in local search results, converting more customers into diners and ordering online.

Rio SEO local restaurant marketing solutions help keep your listings and menus fresh so they stand out in the market. Benefit today from a free local presence audit for an individual analysis of your local search presence and specific recommendations for improvement.

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